We understand that the decision to create an adoption plan does not come lightly. On the contrary. It comes from a strong desire to do what you believe is in the best interests of your child at this time.
You may come to the decision that you are not currently in a position to parent. However, you can still play a role in your child’s life. In an open adoption, you may choose the family to adopt your child, and work with them to prepare an open adoption plan.
“I called Lutheran Social Service when I was about 25 weeks pregnant, knowing that I wanted to create an adoption plan. Our social worker helped us through the process of finding a family; providing questions we could ask the family and the context of what we should be talking about. She made sure to find out how I felt about the experience, and if I was uncomfortable with any situation she would work to fix it. Now, the birth father and I see our son about once a month or two. I really like being able to see him grow up.”
-Pregnancy Services client
What is open adoption?
Open adoption occurs when the expectant parents, or “birth parents,” choose to work with the adoptive parents to plan their child’s adoption. Contact between the birth parents and the child may continue through letters, pictures, phone calls and get-togethers after the child goes home. Open adoptions are not all the same and depend on the individual wishes of the birth and adoptive parents.
Why choose open adoption?
Open adoption offers lifelong benefits for the child, as well as his/her birth and adoptive families. Children grow up without secrets, are in touch with their roots and fully aware of the love that went into their adoption plan. Birth parents are in control of the adoption planning process and get to select which family and level of ongoing contact is right for them. They also can remain involved in their child’s life while having the ability to continue on with their personal goals and life planning. Adoptive parents enter into parenthood with a better understanding of who their child is and whom they can go to for more information.
If birth parents are tentative about the level of contact in open adoption, we can discuss the range of possibilities available to them.
Once I decide to make an adoption plan, what’s next?
While the process will vary for each person, you can expect to complete the following steps:
- Complete intake paperwork with your pregnancy counselor, including a social-medical packet.
- Look at waiting family profiles to determine who you’d like to meet with.
- Schedule match meetings with those families.
- Pick an adoptive family.
- Create a birth plan and outline future contact with the adoptive parents and child.